Luxury travel advisors need to work harder to create more distinctive brands for themselves, delegates were told at the annual Traveller Made conference.
“Chanel forbids suppliers to be at the forefront, or to reveal they even work with the brand – it has only to be Chanel. We look like outlets when all we do is list the badges of other companies we work with,” Traveller Made’s founder and chief executive Quentin Desurmont said at The Essence of Luxury Travel.
He added agents also needed to mimic the traits of leading luxury brands in order to ensure they stood a chance of being taken seriously by high-end customers.
“When you buy Louboutins, you don’t just buy a pair of shoes; you buy the dream around it. You have to have the emotional element around what you buy,” he said.
Another key focus for Traveller Made will be to stamp out discounting on luxury hotel accommodation, said Desurmont.
“Luxury [fashion] brands would rather get rid of their stock than see it sold for much less,” he said.
“Hoteliers need to be more confident in saying no when someone asks them for discounts.”
Traveller Made has 390 members in 65 countries, including agencies in the UK such as Haslemere Travel, Hurlingham Travel Services, Travel Time and Winged Boots.
Desurmont added the combined aggregate sales via all Traveller Made members was now €2.6 billion a year.